As the Masters hangover sets in across the golfing world, this Masters Sunday will be remembered for the first Spieth Major Meltdown of his short, but so far, highly successful career. Amen corner, once again, proved to be the most challenging stretch of holes on the golfing calendar, as Spieth’s invincibility at Augusta was proven to be somewhat mythical.
There’s no denying that Spieth will be challenging at Augusta for decades to come and will learn a great deal from this week. Like all great champions, he needs to be able to accept that this crushing collapse will provide him with a new level of experience for the upcoming Majors and beyond. Spieth is not invincible, he makes mistakes. He just makes a lot less than most on a golf course and in particular at Augusta. However, this week he showed a lot more frailties than in the previous two years and will undoubtedly be on the range this week working on controlling his errant driving and iron play. If The Masters was a putting contest, he would have won by a country mile.
Moving on to the deserved 2016 Masters champion: Danny Willett. No matter who wins at Augusta, a fairytale story always emerges and this is no different for the 28-year-old Englishman. April 10th was already an extremely important date for Willett, as it is on this day that his wife was born and also he was expecting his first child. The Golfing Gods decided that Willett Jr. would arrive 12 days early, giving daddy enough time to travel to Augusta and ultimately experience the greatest day in his golfing career. Twenty years on from Faldo’s third and final green jacket, England has produced another Masters champion, who certainly has the talent and temperament to win many more.
So what else happened of note at Augusta this week? Well, I’m not going to write a thesis on this, so here is a brief look at the top 5 moments, in addition to Willett’s victory.
- Sunday at the 16th: 3 Aces!
Lowry: The Irishman got the ball rolling (literally) as he flushed an 8 iron onto the perfect spot on the 16th green for it to feed back down into the hole. Having failed to capitalize to his opening 68, this moment is one that he will never forget. His Major will come soon, and The Open at Royal Troon this year may be his moment.
Love III: The 2016 Ryder Cup Captain will be hoping for even better memories this year at Hazeltine, but adding a hole in one at the infamous 16th on Masters Sunday is certainly something that Mr. Love III will always remember. And here’s hoping this is the highlight of his year… #GoEurope 🙂
Oosthuizen: Surely you have seen this one…it will be shown for years to come as Oosthuizen’s golf ball almost knocked in JB Holmes on the way to the cup for a double hole in one. It was reminiscent of a bad snooker shot…but an incredible golf shot!
BONUS FOOTAGE: Speaking of holes-in-one, it would be wrong to ignore 80-year-old Gary Player’s ace in the Par 3 contest…
- Langer’s Incredible Performance
It must have been mentioned a million times over the four days, but what 58-year-old Langer almost did would have arguably been the greatest ever story produced in Masters history. He did fall away on the final day, but he will be back next year and will definitely be the one to watch from the senior contingent. Langer took the role of the injured Fred Couples as the crowd favourite as everyone loves a fairytale story. I wonder if the sponsor who took advantage of his blank visor for the weekend is happy with their decision…?
- Els 6 Putt from 2 Feet
Firstly, let it be known that Els finished up in 16th on the putting rankings at Augusta, which is unbelievable after such a shocking start to his tournament. Unfortunately for Els his 6 putt from 2 feet will go down as one of the worst moments in Masters folklore, but such is life. Knowing that Langer overcame the ‘yips’ will give Ernie confidence to do the same.
- Farewell to Tom Watson and Ian Woosnam
Obviously Watson stole most of the media limelight, but Woosnam also will go down in Masters history, so here is a look at his Masters moment (seen as there is no video or photo of his final putt to be found…)
- De Chambeau Looks the Real Deal
Unsurprisingly, Bryson De Chambeau picked up the best amateur award at Augusta, a week before he makes his PGATOUR debut as a professional. His name has been mentioned on numerous occasions before, but as of next week, the added pressure to make a financial living from the game will provide a true test of his unique character.
Ans so there it is, another Masters comes and goes and provides us with another few days of top class entertainment. Roll on The Open in July!